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KaiOS to roll out its first open market device in SA

By , ITWeb
South Africa , 23 Nov 2020

KaiOS Technologies has announced the launch of DIXON XK1, touted as the first open market KaiOS device in South Africa.

The digital device and services firm has partnered with retailer Cash Crusaders to make the 3G smart feature phone available to a broad target market.

Tech specs include 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage; a 2.4” QVGA (230×340) screen and 1.3MP rear camera with flash along with 1,700mAh battery.

It specifies three categories of potential customers in South Africa, including: -

• First-time or relatively new internet users who are looking for a safe space and a trusted reference to access vital information, including access to Google Assistant, Google Maps, WhatsApp, YouTube, Facebook, and other relevant, local content.

• The five million South Africans who want to use the mobile internet, but are priced out of the smartphone market. (KaiOS says according to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA)'s 2020 State of the ICT Sector report, smartphone subscriptions were at 53.4 million in 2019. This figure - which doesn’t account for some people having multiple phones - leaves around five million South Africans without a smartphone)

• People who are looking for a back-up device to switch between operators to get the best price and coverage, to use during activities like hiking or their chosen sports activity.

The companies assert that the introduction of DIXON XK1 also helps the millions of South Africans who are data-price sensitive.

KaiOS says the KaiStore comes with hundreds of data-lite apps that require little data to download and have the option of a progressive web app that can be accessed via a browser that consumes less data than smartphones, and can encourage greater adoption of digital services among the country’s middle- to low-income groups.

“Digital inclusion is a major topic in South Africa and we are happy to be able to play our part in increasing access to the essential life tools and services found online," said CEO of Cash Crusaders, Sean Stegmann. “Mobile phones are no longer luxuries. However, buying a phone and a data plan are still substantial investments for many of our customers. The new DIXON XK1 provides users with all the essential features of a smartphone at a fraction of the price. The limited data used to access apps in the device, as well as the flexibility to use different SIM cards from any operators, could best cater the needs of our customers”.

Sebastien Codeville, CEO of KaiOS Technologies.
Sebastien Codeville, CEO of KaiOS Technologies.

Sebastien Codeville, CEO of KaiOS Technologies, added: “High Street stores across the world are now launching their own branded mobile phones. We're happy to see this trend arrive in South Africa as it enables more people with internet access. The launch of the DIXON XK1 marks the first unlocked smart feature phone in the country. We believe millions of South Africans will benefit through affordable and life-changing digital services."

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